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The Beautiful Blue Danube and the Accursed Black Mountain Wreath: German and Austrian Kulturpolitik of Knowledge on Southeast Europe and Albania

Abstract : In this paper I aim to contribute to the debate about hegemonic relations between the West European “core” and Southeast European “margins”, by showing the links between mutually challenged and engendered quasi-anthropological traditions in the totalitarian projects of nation-building and empire-building. New aspects of a continuous resonance will be addressed regarding a politically instrumentalized German-writing tradition of Volks- and Völkerkunde grounded in Herderian Romanticism and the imperial ambitions of the nineteenth century. In the course of discussion, the successive German traditions of National-Socialist Volkskunde and Communist East German Ethnographie, until the revised tradition of Europäische Ethnologie in the 1990s, are shown to operate from a historicist tradition rather than from a critical tradition as a reflexive successor to former Volkskunde. In this discussion particular attention is given to contextualizing the historical and current production of knowledge by the German and Austrian “West” on a Southeast European and Albanian culture, which is reduced to its archaic or pre-modern “traditions” and its specific or antiquated “mentalities”.
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Albert Doja. The Beautiful Blue Danube and the Accursed Black Mountain Wreath: German and Austrian Kulturpolitik of Knowledge on Southeast Europe and Albania. Soziale Welt: Zeitschrift für sozialwissenschaftliche Forschung und Praxis, Nomos Verlag, 2014, 65 (3), pp.317-343. ⟨10.5771/0038-6073-2014-3-317⟩. ⟨halshs-01131763⟩

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